Andreas, Burnham, Etc. Star in Piazza Tour; Dates Also Set

Direct from Broadway, the romantic new musical THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA will continue to win hearts across North America when it begins a 50-week North American Tour premiering August 2006 in San Francisco and visiting more than 25 cities, including Los Angeles, Washington DC, Boston and many more. A full tour schedule is below.

Principal casting is complete for the touring production, and leading the cast will be Christine Andreas as Margaret Johnson, a protective Southern matron, Elena Shaddow as her daughter Clara, a beautiful 26-year-old American traveling abroad, and David Burnham as Fabrizio Naccarelli, a 20-year old Italian suitor who barely speaks English and is the source of the romantic tension central to the story.

The cast will also feature Laura Griffith as Franca Naccarelli, Jonathan Hammond as Giuseppe Naccarelli, David Ledingham as Signor Naccarelli, Brian Sutherland as Roy Johnson and Diane Sutherland as Signora Naccarelli.

The Ensemble comprises Craig Bennett, Wendi Bergamini, Jane Brockman, Sean Hayden, Leslie Henstock, Prudence Wright Holmes, John Charles Kelly, Evangelia Kingsley, Michel Moinot and Adam Overett.

David Burnham, Laura Griffith, Diane Sutherland, Prudence Wright Holmes, Michel Moinot and Adam Overett join the tour directly from the Broadway cast.

The new musical opened on Broadway April 2005 and instantly became a favorite of critics and audiences alike, extending its run until July 2006 at Lincoln Center Theater's Vivian Beaumont Theater. With book by Craig Lucas, music and lyrics by Adam Guettel and direction by Bartlett Sher, THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA is the winner of six 2005 Tony® Awards, 5 Drama Desk Awards and 2 Outer Critics Circle Awards for its acclaimed New York run, and was recently seen nationwide on PBS's "Live From Lincoln Center."

The musical, based on the novella by ElizaBeth Spencer, is set in the summer of 1953 and tells the story of a mother and daughter traveling through Italy, the daughter's romance with a handsome, high-spirited Florentine, and the mother's determined efforts to keep the two apart. The beautiful songs echo the romantic feelings of love and have been the key to winning the hearts of audiences. Composer Guettel has been praised for capturing "that transcendent, irrational state familiar to anyone who has fallen head over heels in love" (The New York Times) in his score for THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA.

NETworks presents the Lincoln Center Theater production, which reunites the award-winning creative team from Broadway. The musical has sets by Michael Yeargan (2005 Tony® Award winner), costumes by Catherine Zuber (2005 Tony® Award winner), lighting by Christopher Akerlind (2005 Tony® Award winner), sound by ACME Sound Partners, orchestrations by Ted Sperling, Adam Guettel and Bruce Coughlin (2005 Tony® Award winners), music direction by Kimberly Grigsby and musical staging by Jonathan Butterell. The official website for the tour is www.piazzaontour.com.

The Original Cast Recording of THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA, praised as "Sublime," "Ravishing" and "Rhapsodic" by The New York Times, is available on Nonesuch Records, and 4 tracks are available now at http://www.nonesuch.com/Hi_Band/piazza/.

Composer Guettel explains what audiences can expect, "With THE LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA I tried to write music that would sound like the experience of falling in love, to evoke the feeling of it, or memory, or wish. After all, there's a piazza in every American city and I hope that our show brings something genuinely romantic."

PRINCIPAL CAST

Christine Andreas (Margaret Johnson) Broadway: Oklahoma!, Laurey (Tony Nomination); My Fair Lady, Eliza (Theatre World Award); Angel Street, Nancy; Words & Music. West End: The Fields of Ambrosia, Gretchen. Regional: Pal Joey, Vera (Barrymore Award); Kennedy Center, Tartuffe, Marianne; Sarah & Abraham, Hagar. Solo Concert: Carnegie Hall; Avery Fisher; Café Carlyle, Algonquin's Oak Room; Caramoor Festival. The White House; Jazz at Kennedy Center; McCallum Theatre; Adelaide Cabaret Festival. Boston, Detroit, Tulsa, and Richmond Symphonies. TV: "Law & Order SVU"; "Cosby Show"; "Another World"; PBS' "Musical Comedy Tonight." CDs: Love Is Good; The Carlyle Set, Fynsworth Alley, (USA Today top 10 pick). Here's to the Ladies, PS Classics, (USA Today top 10 pick). Visit Storybook, Ms. Andreas' Official Website @christineandreas.com. This performance is for Mac, who like Clara has moved on with dignity into his own life.

David Burnham (Fabrizio Naccarelli) Broadway: The Light in the Piazza (original cast), On the 20th Century (Actor's Fund concert). National tours: Joseph...Dreamcoat (Joseph, replaced Donny Osmond, Drama-Logue Award), Jesus Christ Superstar (Peter). Regional: Tom Jones (Tom, original cast, North Shore Music Theater), Letters from 'Nam (Billy, original cast, Kennedy Center, NSMT, Village Theater), Peggy Sue Got Married (Charlie, original cast, Marriot Lincolnshire), The Woman in Black (The Actor, Coronet Theater), Assasins (Hinckley, Reprise), Godspell (Jesus, MUNY), Pirates of Penzance (Fredrick, Sacramento Music Circus), Children of Eden (Cain, Musical Theater West), and Wicked (Fiyero, workshops). Film: The King & I, Home on the Range. Visit www.DavidBurnham.com.

Laura Griffith (Franca Naccarelli). Broadway: The Light in the Piazza at Lincoln Center, Sweet Smell of Success with John Lithgow and the Trevor Nunn/ Susan Stroman revival of Oklahoma! Europe: West Side Story (Maria) at the Deutsche Oper in Berlin and the Alte Oper in Frankfurt. Regional: A Little Night Music (Anne), The Rocky Horror Show (Janet), Oklahoma! (Laurey) and Beauty and the Beast (Belle). Laura is a native of Southern California and a graduate of Columbia University.

Jonathan Hammond (Giuseppe Naccarelli) acting credits include: Theater for a New Audience, Transport Group, Center Stage, Pittsburgh Public Theater, York Theater Co, Gateway Playhouse, Theaterworks -Palo Alto, Fulton Opera house, Syracuse Stage, Pioneer Theater Company, Meadowbrook Theater Company, Penguin Repertory Company, Barrington Stage, American Repertory Theater, Lark Theater Co., The Public Theater/New Works Now, The Kennedy Center, McCarter Theater Co., Florida Studio Theater, and productions of Forbidden Broadway and Forever Plaid. Television: Law and Order. Elliot Norton and an Outer Critics Circle Awards for Barrington Stage's production of Cabaret. Training: The American Repertory Theater for Advanced Theater Training at Harvard University and The University of Michigan.

David Ledingham (Signor Naccarelli) Steppenwolf's Tony Award Winning Grapes of Wrath at The National Theatre, London. Off-B'way: Comedy of Errors, The Double Inconstancy, The Trojan Women and Quartet at BAM. Regional: Papermill Playhouse, The Old Globe, La Jolla Playhouse, San Jose Rep, Mark Taper, Milwaukee Rep, Merrimack Rep, Asolo Theatre. Film: Starring with Brad Douriff in Final Judgement. TV: Law & Order, One Life to Live, Hunter etc. For Adrianna and Aidan for their love and support during this tour.

Elena Shaddow (Clara Johnson) is currently playing Magnolia Hawks in Show Boat at London's Royal Albert Hall. Broadway: The Woman in White, Fiddler on the Roof, Nine, Sweet Smell of Success and Les Misérables. Off-Broadway: The Water Coolers. Regional credits include The Importance of Being Earnest, Senor Discretion Himself, My Fair Lady and Lili in Carnival at Paper Mill Playhouse.

Brian Sutherland (Roy Johnson) Broadway: The Sound of Music, 1776, Victor/Victoria, Steel Pier, Cats, Dance a Little Closer, A Change in the Heir, 110 in the Shade (NYC Opera). Tours: Disney's On the Record, Guys and Dolls (w/Maurice Hines), Cabaret (w/Joel Grey), 42nd Street (European tour). Regional: Shenandoah (Fords Theatre), Man of La Mancha (Pittsburgh Public), Pirates of Penzance (Guthrie Theatre), Breaking Legs (Coconut Grove Playhouse), She Loves Me (St. Louis Rep), Enter the Guardsman (Indiana Rep).

Diane Sutherland (Signora Naccarelli) Broadway: The Light in the Piazza, She Loves Me (Amalia-1994 Revival), 1776,Three Sisters, Song and Dance, Cats (original co.), A Chorus Line. Off-B'way: First Ladies Suite and Requiem for William (Transport Group), The Waves. National Tours: Guys & Dolls (50th anniv. tour), Cabaret, Phantom of the Opera, Les Misérables (First National Tour), Cats (Helen Hayes Award). Regional: Enter the Guardsman, Edwin Drood, Into the Woods, A Little Night Music, American Vaudeville. Recordings: She Loves Me (1994), Guys & Dolls (50th anniv.) Gershwin's Tell Me More, Man with a Load of Mischief (2004).

CREATIVE TEAM

Playwright Craig Lucas' other plays include Reckless, The Dying Gaul and Blue Window. His screenplays include adaptations The Secret Lives of Dentists, Longtime Companion and adaptations of his plays: Prelude to A Kiss, Reckless, Blue Window and, most recently, The Dying Gaul, which also marked his directorial debut and premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.

Adam Guettel won the 2005 Tony® Awards for Best Original Score and for Best Orchestrations for The Light in the Piazza. He wrote the music and lyrics for the musical Floyd Collins and for Saturn Returns: A Concert, which was recorded by Nonesuch Records under the title Myths and Hymns. He wrote the music for the New York Theatre Workshop production of John Guare's Lydie Breeze and collaborated with Guare on Love's Fire for The Acting Company. He scored the feature documentary, Arguing the World and the CBS documentary Jack. Four of his songs are featured on Audra McDonald's recording Way Back To Paradise.

Bartlett Sher, the Artistic Director of Seattle's Tony® Award winning Intiman Theatre, won the Callaway Award for his direction of the Theatre For A New Audience (TFANA) production of Shakespeare's Cymbeline, which was the first American Shakespeare production to be seen at the Royal Shakespeare Company. His other New York productions include Moliere's Don Juan, Harley Granville Barker's Waste and Pericles for TFANA, Teresa Rybeck's The Butterfly Collection at Playwrights Horizons, and Mourning Becomes Electra for the New York City Opera. This season, he directed the Tony® Award winning revival of Clifford Odets' Awake and Sing!

TOUR DATES 2006-07

San Francisco, CA Aug 1–27 Orpheum Theatre www.shnsf.com
Cincinnati, OH Sept 5–17 Aronoff Center www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Orlando, FL Sept 19–24 Bob Carr PAC www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Miami, FL Sept 26–Oct 1 Miami PAC www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Tampa, FL Oct 3–8 Tampa Bay PAC www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Atlanta, GA Oct 10–15 Fox Theatre www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Los Angeles, CA Oct 31–Dec 10 Ahmanson Theatre www.taperahmanson.com
Washington, DC Dec 19–Jan 7 Kennedy Center www.kennedy-center.org
Des Moines, IA Jan 9–14 Civic Center www.civiccenter.org
Cleveland, OH Jan 16–28 Palace Theatre www.playhousesquare.org
St. Louis, MO Jan 30–Feb 11 Fox Theatre www.fabulousfox.com
Raleigh, NC Feb 13–18 Memorial Auditorium www.broadwayseriessouth.com
Pittsburgh, PA Feb 20–25 Benedum Center www.pgharts.org
Hershey, PA Feb 27–Mar 4 Hershey Theatre www.hersheytheatre.com
Philadelphia, PA Mar 6–11 Merriam Theatre www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Columbus, OH Mar 13–18 Palace Theatre www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Minneapolis, MN Mar 20–25 Orpheum Theatre www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Portland, OR Apr 10–15 Keller Auditorium www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Seattle, WA Apr 17–29 Paramount Theatre www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Costa Mesa, CA May 1–13 Orange Co. PAC www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Tempe, AZ May 15–20 Gammage Auditorium www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Boston, MA May 29–Jun 9 Colonial Theatre www.broadwayacrossamerica.com
Sacramento, CA Jun 13–24 Community Center www.californiamusicaltheatre.com

More cities to be announced…

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